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Archangel Michael in the book of Jude March 12, 2008

Posted by mercedescoleen in God.
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I thought that it was important to share some understanding that I received about Chief Prince Michael based on writings of Apostle Jude.  Jude’s main teaching in the letter relates to the defense of the faith against false teachings. The reference to the Prince is found in Jude 1: 9:

Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee

I love the book of Jude and used to read it repeatedly, but was shown some truths that enlarged my understanding about the Prince and the faith our Lord Jesus Christ. An examination of  Jude 1: 9 reveals the following about Prince Michael:

A. PRINCE MICHAEL’S PERSONAL DATA

  • His rank – archangel
  • He contends with the devil. This is consistent with Daniel 10, Daniel 12: 1, Zechariah 3 and Rev 12.
  • He does not rail against the devil, but rebukes him in the name of the Lord.

B. MISSING UNDERSTANDINGS ABOUT PRINCE MICHAEL REVEALED IN THE BOOK OF JUDE

  • The conjunction “YET” is used to introduce Prince Michael in Jude 1: 9. A conjunction is a word that links words and phrases together, in order to express a relationship between them.  Other conjunctions include the words and, or, but, because, when and unless.
  • Therefore, Jude 1: 9 can only be fully understood in the context of the preceding and subsequent verses.  

C.THE INTRODUCTION OF THE FACTS IN JUDE 1: 1-8?

  • Apostle Jude introduced himself  and greeted the brethren (Jude 1: 1,2).
  • The critical point, however, is that Jude exhorted the believers to “earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints” (Jude 1: 3b). To contend for something is to assert or to maintain earnestly on the issue without giving up; to wrestle, to battle, to fight. 
  • Apostle Jude exhorted the brethren that they were to contend against the teachings of false teachers, prophets  and apostles who had crept secretly into the church in order to deny the truth – who taught the believers to be lascivious or lustful, wanton, shameless and insolent.  Their doctrine was the denial of God and of Jesus Christ. I spoke of this when writing about false apostles.
  • Jude said that these ungodly teachers were “ordained to this condemnation before speaking about the nature of the condemnation. What was the condemnation? He used the writing style of placing the outcome before the event in order to lead his readers on and to emphasize the truth that unbelievers (especially those who  pervert the truth) are reserved unto a particular condemnation, which is initially revealed in Jude 1:5-7.

D. THE SIMILARITY BETWEEN FIVE GROUPS OF UNBELIEVERS IN JUDE 1: 5-8 WHO ALSO EXPERIENCED THIS CONDEMNATION

In these verses, Apostle Jude skilfully used several stylistic devices to show that the false teachers would go to hell as well as any one who did not obey the truth.

  • The Jews who wandered in the wilderness and were destroyed due to unbelief was another group that went to hell. Jude showed this by the statement, “I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not”.   By using the phrase, I will therefore put you in remembrance”, Jude warns the believers that He is actually warning them that they would be destroyed if they did not believe and obey the truth.
  • Apostle Jude then used another conjunction in verse 6 to explain that the Jews who were destroyed share the same fate as the disobedient angels who were also destroyed for failing to obey the truth. This truth was explained by the use of the conjunction AND at the beginning of  verse 6, which linked these two groups of unbelievers together:

And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day”.

Jude’s teaching reveals to us that anyone who disobeys the truth will share the same fate as the demons that are bound in hell.

  • The Apostle then showed in Jude 1: 7, that the souls incinerated  in Sodom and Gomorrah also experienced this condemnation, since they were destroyed as an example to all men and are now suffering the vengeance of eternal fire (Jude 1: 7):

Even asSodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire”. 

E. WHAT ARE THE IMPLICATIONS OF JUDE 1: 7?

  • We know from scriptures that homosexuality was the chief  sin of Sodom and Gomorrah and this was appallingly revealed in Genesis 19.  The words “even as” at  the beginning of Jude 1: 7 were intended to show the comparison between the sins of the false teachers, unbelieving Jews who died in the wilderness and the angels that fell.
  • While this sin is not the only cause for this condemnation, scriptures show that this sin is so abominable to God that He actually came down to visit the cities of Sodom and experienced first hand the abominable behavior of the men living there (Gen 19).

 F. DISRESPECT FOR GOD IS ANOTHER REASON FOR THIS CONDEMNATION

Having already taught us about the kinds of sins that incur special vengeance from God, Jude introduces another in Jude 1:8:

Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.”

Here are two translations:

Yet these false teachers, who claim authority from their dreams, live immoral lives, defy authority, and scoff at the power of the glorious ones (New Living Translation).

In the very same way, these dreamers pollute their own bodies, reject authority and slander celestial beings (NIV).

G. WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

  • Jude showed the similarity between the men of Sodom and Gomorrah and the false teachers of his day in Jude 1: 8.  Their sins of sexual immorality were induced by dreams. They followed the example of the men of Sodom who gave themselves over to fornication and went after strange flesh. They were like the Canaanites of Moses’ day who engaged in all kinds of sexual perversion (Lev 19, 20).
  •  The men of Sodom despised God when they surrounded Lot’s house as the Lord lodged there. I believe that God had really planned to destroy the city soon after His arrival rather than the next day, but was detained by Lot’s hospitality and invitation to shelter in his home.

I am about to write immediately about  verse 9, and invite you to read the subsequent post. Blessings

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1. The Precept Or Doctrine Of Triune God « Power of Prayer, Praise and the Word of God - August 13, 2012

[…] Archangel Michael revealed by Apostle Jude […]

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